Q: Do I require permission from companies to use purchased parts to build a complete new item to sell?
Hi, I'm considering starting my own "small guitar company" with the goal of producing around 24-36 guitars/basses per year. The guitar bodies will be of my own designs and built by me. However, I’ll need some parts such as neck, tuners, bridge, pickups, electronics and a few other parts.
If I purchase parts from a company such as Allparts, will I need any sort of agreement to use them on my builds? For example: If they sell parts such as a "Bigsby tremolo" by Gretsch, and allows me to buy large quantities, is that ok?
I'm asking because most parts have "licensed" printed on them, and since I'll be paying for the parts, I assume that means I can use them on my guitars. The companies won't be losing money - in fact they’ll be making money because of the parts required; plus most sellers offer bulk buying, which seems like they’re aware.
A: Very likely
If the parts are designed specifically for them they may have restrictions on who can buy them.
The supplier should be able to answer those questions and if they can't sell you they should tell you.
A: My colleague above failed to account for the "first sale doctrine," which, in most circumstances, permits you to buy parts off-the-shelf and use them in new products. If you buy the products from a licensed retailer/wholesaler, you're most likely in the clear.
As a musician and instrument (pedals mainly) builder myself, I know this is commonly-accepted practice.
But to be totally sure, you should consult with an IP attorney to fully assess your risks.
Justia Ask a Lawyer is a forum for consumers to get answers to basic legal questions. Any information sent through Justia Ask a Lawyer is not secure and is done so on a non-confidential basis only.
The use of this website to ask questions or receive answers does not create an attorney–client relationship between you and Justia, or between you and any attorney who receives your information or responds to your questions, nor is it intended to create such a relationship. Additionally, no responses on this forum constitute legal advice, which must be tailored to the specific circumstances of each case. You should not act upon information provided in Justia Ask a Lawyer without seeking professional counsel from an attorney admitted or authorized to practice in your jurisdiction. Justia assumes no responsibility to any person who relies on information contained on or received through this site and disclaims all liability in respect to such information.
Justia cannot guarantee that the information on this website (including any legal information provided by an attorney through this service) is accurate, complete, or up-to-date. While we intend to make every attempt to keep the information on this site current, the owners of and contributors to this site make no claims, promises or guarantees about the accuracy, completeness or adequacy of the information contained in or linked to from this site.